Tag Archives: Rachelle Gardner

3 Cups of Tea, Kindle Lending Library and More

This past Sunday, 60 Minutes did a piece on the best selling book Three Cups of Tea.  Among the concerns raised were allegations that parts of the book were, at best, exaggerations of the author’s adventures in Afghanistan and, at worst, out right fabrications.  While 60 Minutes did not do a hatchet job on the book or the author, it raised enough eyebrows for the fall-out to begin.  The latest is news that Montana’s attorney general is going to be looking into the charity associated with the author, Greg Mortenson.

Also appearing this week is Jon Krakauer’s Three Cups of Deceit, an 80-something page “expose” detailing how “Greg Mortenson, humanitarian hero, lost his way”.  I am not endorsing this work as I have yet to read it, however, Krakauer was one of those interviewed by 60 Minutes who raised concerns about how monies from Mortenson’s charity are being used.

For more on this, check out my post from yesterday.

In other news, for all those Kindle owners who have moaned and groaned because you can’t borrow e-books from your library (most libraries use OverDrive which is mainly limited to EPUB format for e-books), there is good news.  Amazon has announced that it will be launching library lending with more than 11,000 libraries in the U. S. later this year.  You can read the press release here.   The really good news here is that this capability will be available for all versions of the Kindle.

Agent Rachelle Gardner has a great post today on “6 Thinks Writers Can Learn From Hemingway“.  For every writer out there, I recommend you take a look at Ms. Gardner’s list.  I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve seen posts from writers — usually new ones, but not always — say they don’t read other books in the genre they are writing in because, gasp, they don’t want to be contaminated by someone else’s style.  They are convinced what they have to say is unique and will be ruined if they see what else is happening in the genre.  Word of advice — read.  Read lots.  Read in your genre and in other genres as well.  Read non-fiction.  Research.  Read.

Finally, check out Sarah A. Hoyt’s post over a Mad Genius Club today.  This is another must-read for all authors.


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Monday Morning . . .

and my brain is almost working.  So a couple of links and thoughts and then a reminder.

The first link is to Mad Genius Club.  This morning, Dave Freer is blogging about the potential of an e-book avalanche.  Not only does he discuss the signs he’s seeing, but also his plans and thoughts on the changing of the industry.

Of particular interest are his comments on Amazon giving authors access to their Bookscan numbers.  I’ve heard the same stories Dave has from authors who are convinced — and some probably rightly so — that the numbers they are getting from their publishers are, at best, mistakes and at worse works of fiction.  Amazon, by giving authors free access to data many hadn’t been able to afford before, is doing two things.  The first is simply giving authors a means of double-checking their sales numbers (which is a good thing.  I know authors who have had royalty statements reporting the exact same number of sales reporting period after reporting period).

But it’s the second thing Amazon is doing that I think is a brilliant piece of marketing.  They are building loyalty with these authors.  Especially since Bookscan will soon be reporting e-sales, iirc.  Simply put, Amazon is saying, “Here you go, authors.  We are on your side and we want to give you as much information as possible.  We have nothing to hide.  Can your traditional publishers say the same?”

(Of course, this still doesn’t deal with the problems inherent with Bookscan numbers because they don’t count all outlets where books are sold.  But it is still a tool that has not been available to a number of authors before now.)

The second link this morning is to agent Rachelle Gardner’s blog.  She has an excellent post on the dilemma faced by a prolific author, especially an author who has just signed a new contract.  As a writer, her comments struck home with me, especially those about publishers who insist on contract clauses tying the author to that house either through the right of first refusal or by not allowing an author to sell to another house until after their contract with the first house has been fulfilled.

From a publishing standpoint, I can understand the need to see how a book does before committing time and resources to another book by an author.  Even as a digital publisher, it’s an important consideration.  Most e-publishers — NRP included — don’t pay advances.  But that isn’t the only cost that goes into publishing an e-book.  You still have multiple people involved in the intake process, editorial process, conversion process, promotions, etc.  All that takes time and money.  If those expenses aren’t met and profit made — very important so you can pay the author and they can then write more for you — you can’t keep publishing.  Negative cash flow can only go on for so long before a company will fold.

But from a writer’s standpoint, it’s a frustrating issue.  This is especially true if you’re just breaking into the business.  It leads to having to decide between sitting on a manuscript — or three — while your first book is published and those first sets of numbers come in or not writing — ACK! — or finding alternative means of getting your work out there.

Can you can, “vicious circle”?

Finally, the reminder.  Our submission period is open for one more week.  We are currently looking for short stories, novellas and novels in all genres except erotica.  For more information, you can check out our guidelines here.  Or if you have any questions, you can e-mail us at submissions-at-nakedreader-dot-com (you know what to do to make it a valid e-mail addy).

Now, I’m off to find more coffee so I can dig into the work on my desk.

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